A group of fundraisers who spent the night at Ibrox in support of Glasgow’s homeless community were able to see how their efforts have made a difference, as they recently spent two weeks volunteering at Glasgow City Mission’s Winter Night Shelter.
The Rangers Charity Foundation’s ‘Big Ibrox Sleep Outs’ enable supporters to stay overnight at the home of Rangers Football Club, with funds going towards the night shelter on East Campbell Street in central Glasgow.
Thanks to the participants’ fundraising, the night shelter is able to remain open for the month of March when it would otherwise have to shut – an initiative which the Foundation has run for five years.
Unfortunately, on Wednesday 18th March the shelter was ordered by the Scottish Government to shut down immediately, after a staff member and guest both tested positive for COVID-19.
The Foundation’s funding means that staff will continue to be paid for the entire month of March and can support guests as much as possible and through existing services, including trying to find them alternative accommodation, as well as giving out hats, scarves and gloves. Some have already been provided with temporary hotel accommodation.
To celebrate the achievements of the Big Ibrox Sleep Out fundraisers, and gain a better understanding of the impact they’ve made, some took it in turns to volunteer at the night shelter’s morning shifts; helping to serve breakfast and clear beds.
Louise took part in the ‘Big Ibrox Sleep Outs’ and went on to volunteer. She said: “What an absolutely humbling experience – hats off to the volunteers who help all the time, or even now and again!
“It was so good to see where the money we raised went and I wish I could help more. Thank you for organising this!”
Another volunteer, Sharron, added: “Just wanted to say thank you for the opportunity to volunteer at the night shelter.
“We have just left the centre and it’s the best start to a working week I could have asked for. We gave our thanks to the team there but mostly they are so grateful for the money we have raised to keep them open through the month of March.”
On the completion of the two weeks, Rangers Charity Foundation Director, Connal Cochrane, joined the volunteers and helped to officially present the donation to Glasgow City Mission.
Commenting on the visit, he said: “Seeing our fundraisers so passionately support the night shelter was an extremely proud moment for me.
“We were delighted to host more ‘Big Ibrox Sleep Outs’ than ever in 2019 and participants raised an incredible £60,000 – half of which ensures that the night shelter is able to remain open in a month when the weather is still very cold and guests are able to benefit from a free, warm place to sleep with food.
“The other £30,000 ensures that we are able to continue to act as a force for good on behalf of the Rangers Family, both locally and across the globe. I cannot thank our fundraisers enough for their continued and unwavering support.
“We at the Foundation remain in contact with Glasgow City Mission and wish to express our solidarity towards their important work at this challenging time.”
Jack Geddes, Marketing and Fundraising Manager at Glasgow City Mission said: “We continue to be amazed and humbled by the commitment shown by the Rangers Charity Foundation and the Rangers fans for the night shelter.
“Again the money raised ensures that we were able to open for four months instead of three. Your generosity is saving lives, thank you so much.”
For more information about Glasgow City Mission, visit www.glasgowcitymission.com.
For more information about Rangers Charity Foundation, visit: www.rangerscharity.org.uk.